Yahoo loses its chief technologist; second exec departure this week

Yahoo has lost another key executive this week. Chief Technologist Sam Pullara is leaving to take a positions as Entrepreneur in Residence at Benchmark Capital.

Yahoo has lost another major executive, the second in a week, with the departure of Chief Technologist Sam Pullara, who is off to Benchmark Capital to be an Entrepreneur in Residence.

His move, confirmed by Kara Swisher's Boomtown blog, follows Monday's announced departure of Joanne Bradford, senior VP of U.S. Revenue and Market Development and reportedly a key player in the search and online ad deal with Microsoft, according to a Boomtown post Bradford will be Chief Revenue Officer at Demand Media. And it was also  confirmed earlier this week that Ash Patel, a longtime exec who joined the company in 1996, just before it went public, finally has left for good - a departure that has been rumored since he took a leave late last year.

For a company that's publicly talking up the progress that it's making, following rough times under the previous leadership and some rocky moments caused by a rough economy, it may be time for Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz to throw down some charm - or more - to keep the executive talent that's helping Yahoo gain some momentum.

Any loss can be tough to swallow but folks like Pullara and Bradford played key roles in helping Bartz and the others to push Yahoo's agenda forward. Bradford has been described as the "top ad money-maker," an important role at any company, and Pullara was not only involved in developing and selling new technologies but also was the company's representative on the Open Social Foundation founded by Yahoo, Google and MySpace.

In a statement that has been published on the Boomtown blog, Pullara writes:

My time at Yahoo! has been a great personal and professional experience. With the social strategy and business development projects I've been focusing on now in their implementation phase, and my pet technology project, YQL, now widely deployed both inside and outside of Yahoo!, it's a natural time for me to transition and spend time with my family before returning to my entrepreneurial roots. I'm leaving Yahoo! with no doubt that the company is on the right track and in good hands.

My time at Yahoo! has been a great personal and professional experience. With the social strategy and business development projects I’ve been focusing on now in their implementation phase, and my pet technology project, YQL, now widely deployed both inside and outside of Yahoo!, it’s a natural time for me to transition and spend time with my family before returning to my entrepreneurial roots. I’m leaving Yahoo! with no doubt that the company is on the right track and in good hands.

Pullara's last day will be April 1.

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